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IPMAN cries out over members’ funds trapped in scrapped petroleum agencies

THE Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) has alleged that an enormous amount of money being owed by the Federal Government has been trapped in the recently-scrapped agencies in the Ministry of Petroleum Resources as a result of the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA).

IPMAN made the public outcry in a statement signed by its National President, Chinedu Okoronkwo, on Thursday in Lagos.

According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) report, the scrapped agencies are: the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), Petroleum Equalization Fund Management Board (PEFMB), and Petroleum Product Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA).

The agencies were scrapped following the signing of the Petroleum Industry Act which created the Nigerian Upstream Regulatory Commission and the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority.

IPMAN said it portends danger if its members’ funds, running into tens of billions of dollars, remain trapped in the agencies as this may affect members in the discharge of their obligation to the general public.

The association also stressed the need for urgent reconciliation of the huge sums of money to avert a major crisis in the sector.

“In view of our past experience by virtue of the enormous amount of money being owed by the federal government vis-a-vis DPR, PEFMB and PPPRA, IPMAN has engaged the services of Mauritz Walton Nig. Ltd.

“The firm is to reconcile and recover the product differentials lasting several years between IPMAN and the Federal Government,” the statement said.

The association promised to make a more detailed statement to its members and to the general public in due course.

It quoted the Managing Director of Mauritz Walton Nig. Ltd, Dr Maurice Ibe, as saying that he would be bringing his expertise in forensic financial consultancy to bear on the assignment.

Ibe said the firm would be reviewing all information, records, invoices and documentation from IPMAN members with a view to determining the amount owed and what is recoverable.

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